Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020
Wednesday morning, the Floyd County EMA received a request to assist Floyd County Police to search for a suspect in a property theft in the area of 6600 St. Mary’s Rd. EMA Director Kent Borrow contacted the Lafayette Twp. Fire Protection District to assist with our DJI Mavic 2 Enterprise Dual UAV/drone. Within a few minutes of the request, the UAV and pilot arrived on the scene and began the search. The UAV has a camera that uses both visual and infrared, not night vision, showing heat signatures from almost a hundred feet in the air and up to two miles away from where it took off. Unfortunately, the search did not find the subject in the area. They were later found in New Albany and arrested.
This tool gives the department capabilities to search for people that may be lost. It also provides a vantage point above structure and wildland fires so officers in charge can see where the fire is and where it might be going to move resources where they are needed most. The UAV can also assist with pre-planning fire events at commercial buildings collecting photos from above and eliminating firefighters having to climb on the roof to inspect for safety hazards.
The Floyd County EMA Director was able to secure a grant for five drones. Lafayette Twp and Georgetown Twp Fire Protection Districts, New Chapel Fire Co., New Albany Fire Department, and Floyd County EMA.